Man, 24, charged with sexual assault at Cranston high-school graduation party
CRANSTON, R.I. — A man was charged with sexual assault and two women were charged with providing alcohol to minors at a high-school graduation party in Cranston, police said Thursday.
Joseph Kirtlink, 24, of East Greenwich, was charged with first-degree sexual assault after an investigation into the party on Stevens Road on June 9.
Police say Kimberly Ruggiero, 40, who lives at the home where the party took place, and Carolyn Bird, 46, of School Street in East Providence, violated the state’s social host laws.
Ruggiero and Bird distributed marijuana in the form of chocolate edibles and alcohol, including jello shots, to the adults and juveniles who were at the party, police said.
One 18-year-old female had to be taken to Rhode Island Hospital after being overcome by chocolate edibles laced with marijuana and possibly another narcotic, Maj. Todd Patalano said.
After police launched an investigation, they learned on June 15 that a different 18-year-old female was sexually assaulted at the party, Patalano said. The victim told police that Ruggiero and Bird gave her alcohol and marijuana, and she became incapacitated — unable to speak or function, police said.
Kirtlink was charged with sexually assaulting her. He was arrested last week. Kirtlink is being held without bail after his arraignment.
Police declined to describe the relationship between Ruggiero, Bird, Kirtlink and the victims to protect the identity of the juveniles.
Ruggiero was arrested Tuesday and charged with procurement of alcohol for a minor, a misdemeanor, and released on $1,000 personal recognizance. Bird turned herself in Wednesday and was charged with misdemeanor procurement of alcohol for a minor and distribution of a narcotic to a minor, a felony. She was arraigned and released on $10,000 personal recognizance, police said.
Police said one the parents of one of the party-goers accompanied her